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Public Displays of Anger: Dez Bryant
NORTH CAROLINA (BASN) -We, at Blackathlete.com, decided to re-publish this story, which first appeared on July 22, 2010 due to the recent two game suspension of Sacramento Kings’ center Demarcus Cousins, who was fined $70,000 for confronting Spurs announcer Sean Elliot after the Kings lost to the Spurs 97-86 last Friday in what “they called a hostile manner.” But, with the lastest incident involving Dez Bryant, we still have to address this issue.
All of this was sparked when former Spurs star Sean Elliot, who was doing play-by-play, chastised Cousins for ‘talking-trash” Tim Duncan after scoring twice on Duncan and drawing a foul on a third possession.
Just ask Terrell Owens, Serena Williams, Rasheed Wallace, Ron Artest or the University of Baylor’s freshman dunking sensation center Brittney Griner, who was ejected from a game against Texas Tech last year for punching an opposing player in the face.
This is one of the major reasons the 5th overall pick of the Sacramento Kings’ DeMarcus Cousins has become the new punching bag for the NBA due to his on-court confrontations with head-coach John Calipari when he played for the University of Kentucky as a freshmen.
Because even though DeMarcus is a 6-foot-11, 292 pound Black man from Birmingham, Alabama, the NBA would love for him to act more like a “little kid” so little white children can view him as approachable without being intimated by his size and presence.
Besides, everybody loves a gentle giant.
That’s why the 1979 Coke-Cola commercial featuring the Pittsburgh Steelers’ defensive end “Mean” Joe Green tossing his jersey to a little white kid, who gives him a Coke, prompting him to smile, is considered by some to be one of the best commercials ever made in the history of advertisement. (Read my previous article The Soda Wars Continue on BASN)
For this reason, I can see Cousins’ agent suggesting that he take a photograph for Sports Illustrated with a big ole Kool-Aid smile on your face like Ronald McDonald with a nasty hamburger in his hand while carrying or riding some white kids on his back as if he were a pony at some amusement park.
But for the love of God, I hope he doesn’t do it.
Because perception is reality and image is everything. (Please read, my previous articles on BASN entitled Addressing the Dress: The Feminization of the Black Male Image and Oh, No He Didn’t to learn more about this topic)
To be honest, the NBA would love if Cousins developed a family-friendly or kid-friendly attitude and act more cartoonish like Shaquille O’Neal did earlier in his career when he played a rapping genie in the movie “Kazaam.”
Or simply act like Charles Barkley, who is now considered by many to be a bumbling buffoon for TNT. Let’s not forget, it was Sir Charles who wrote the book “Who’s Afraid of a Large Black Man.”
And just like Cousins, Barkley was also considered overweight and undersized by many NBA scouts. But oddly, it was Barkley’s in your face attitude and boldness that made him a NBA legend.
Despite Barkley’s basketball brilliance and at-risk attitude, which led him to toss a man through a bar window, his street cred with Black basketball lovers was shattered when they discovered that he had married a white woman.
Hopefully, Cousins won’t decide to go down that road regardless of how tempting it might be (checkout my article entitled The Topic That Want Go Away as a crash course)
Cousins, in fact, must “kill them” with his kindness.
Because the NBA, would rather him be Barack Obama than Malcolm X. Evander Holyfield rather than Mike Tyson.
Don’t get me wrong, they won’t be upset if he talked like Mike with that squeaky voice of his.
But, by no means do they want him to lose his “cool” like “Iron Mike” did in that press conference against Lennox Lewis, or like Ron Artest did in the Malice in the Palace when he went into the stands to fight a fan in Detroit.
In other words, DeMarcus must learn to keep his cool.
It will be frustrating but we all have worn that mask and masqueraded with split-personalities in order to survive on the job, in the boardroom, in the classroom, and even in the White House.
Yes, even President Obama had to do it in order to win the presidency.
I know I’m going to make a lot of Black folks angry by saying this.
But even President Obama, the “so-called leader of the free world” couldn’t and can’t show any signs of anger. He must keep his poker-face on 24 hours a day without displaying any emotion or he could also be perceived and labeled an angry Black man like Cousins.
Remember when Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates Jr. was arrested outside of his house and President Obama said the police officer acted “stupidly,” that word alone was deemed a sign of hostility according to several conservative news outlets.
As a result, President Obama was forced to apologize to the Cambridge police officer Sergeant James Crowley over a cold beer.
Obama’s passive aggressive demeanor, in fact, almost cost him a second term, especially after the first presidential debate against Mitt Romney this year.
Why? Because America hates to see an angry Black man. (Read my previous article The Unexpressed Anger of Black Men on BASN)
In their “white supremacy view,” all Black men are suppose to be docile, friendly, soft, and non-threatening even if he stands 6-foot-11 and weighs 292 pounds.
Oh yeah, I know some people are getting angry at me for writing this. But the “truth will set you free, but it will also make you angry as hell”
Suprisingly, however, while Bryant was certainly animated on the sidelines, the audio shows he was mostly trying to fire his team up.
Former Dallas Cowboy WR Terrell Owens, who has been accused of being an angry Black man chimed in on the recent controversy of the Cowboys receiver by saying that when Tom Brady has a sideline outburts like Bryant it is called passion. But, when a Black athlete does the same thing it is viewed as being negative.
Here is the full content of the sideline outburst:
BRYANT: No! We can’t let them do that! These [expletive] [unclear.] They’re manning me the [expletive] up. We destroy that!
Hey — we gotta mix that [expletive] up! [Unclear, PA covers up Bryant's comments.]
They press me! [Or maybe "It's fresh meat!"] It’s over! [Unclear]
BRYANT: [Unclear] I’m cutting! I’m cutting clean.
I know on that last one, they bust me, it’s over.
[Talks with coach, unclear with stadium noise]
Man, we good on that, Tony. We the best in the NFL on that. We the best in the NFL. And I could…I’m telling you, if you look at it on film…man, if you look at it on film, [unclear] I swear to God out there, [unclear, PA announcer speaking] on the zero, I’m cutting. [Unclear] [expletive] [unclear.]
ROMO: You gotta set it down.
DOOLEY: In other words, don’t look at Tony, because the safety’s coming out of the top.
BRYANT: I see that.
DOOLEY: So when you run… When you run…
ROMO: Look it. Look at me. I’m throwing the ball and you’re already over here.
ROMO: You should be setting down on that.
DOOLEY: Run like this. Don’t look at Tony and then stop, and say “Tony.”
ROMO: I don’t care [unclear] [expletive] like as soon as you’re over the ball you should tell me right now.
DOOLEY: Give it to me.
ROMO: Stop or you’re gone.
DOOLEY: It looks open, but they’re coming out of the top.
BRYANT: It did. It did. It did.
DOOLEY: I knew what you saw because they doubled Wit.
BRYANT: [Unclear] I hadn’t seen it… [Looks out on field.] Pick that [expletive] up man. C’mon…
Honestly, as Black men, we aren’t shocked by Bryant getting chastised by the media for his passionate sideline tirade because, most of us “subconsciously” have been told our whole lives by school teachers, college coaches, and even our parents in the age of integration to behave and act just like them.
It’s the old philosophy of “When it doubt, do as the Romans do.” But nobody told us that the Romans, doing that time in history, were doing some God awful things.
Therefore, DeMarcus must be true to himself and continue to be Big, Black, and Bold and not let these so-called experts make him into something he doesn’t want to be – Shawn Bradley.
“If you want to maximize your marketability as a Black athlete, you must instantly lose all of that Black stuff, which includes losing some of your Black friends, (Ask, Mike Vick), your Black church with the Black Jesus hanging on the wall along with your Black preacher especially if his name is Reverend Jeremiah Wright (Ask Barack Obama) and possibly you’re Black girlfriend if you’re Chad Johnson.
Besides, in the world of sports, we don’t see color. We just see athletes. We just see people. We just see human beings. But please don’t be seen with the Black Muslims like Muhammad Ali or read articles on the Black Athlete Sports Network. But you can be seen on BET, because Viacom owns that now.
Besides, you’re not Black anymore. You are rich. You are, in fact, in a new tax bracket now. So, this is how you are supposed to behave. This is what you are supposed to say. This is who you are supposed to say it to. (Ask, LeBron James)
Why? Because, we want to make you more marketable so you can help us sell all of this junk food, fast food, sodas, bottle water, tennis shoes, sweatshirts, jerseys, jackets, hats, underwear, watches, cell phones, computers, and cars.
But you must do everything we tell you to do in order for us to make as much money off of your “image and likeness” as possible before you blow out your knee like Sam Bowie, get caught in a sex scandal like Tiger Woods, retire like Michael Jordan or get cut from the team like Harold Miner.
This is why Earvin “Magic “Johnson is so beloved, because he learned how to smile. Even though he contracted H.I.V., he still hasn’t lost his ability to smile for the camera.
Matter of fact, he still smiling and grinning.
Sorry, Boston fans. But nobody wants to look mean all the time like Robert Parish or Kendrick Perkins.
So once again, let me repeat myself.
Could you please act more like Tim Duncan rather than Alonzo Mourning? Could you please act more like David Robinson rather than Kevin Garnett? Because honestly, we really don’t like hearing all of that yelling and cursing he does doing the game, especially during the NBA playoffs.
Besides, DeMarcus, if you do all of this, and not lose your temper, you will be a superstar in this league.
Why? Because nobody likes to see an angry Black man, especially one who is 6-foot-11 292 pounds and rich.” Yeah, this is was what they are going to tell you DeMarcus before you ink that deal with the Sacramento Kings.
But DeMarcus, I humbly suggest that when everybody leaves the room and you are all alone, pick up a Bible and read the book of Proverbs Chapter 14 verse 17 which says: He that is quick-tempered deals foolishly. (Ask, Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert)
Because the right team selected you, and now you can walk around with the word KINGS on your hat and across your chest. Because we are descendants of KINGS and not slaves!!!
But I saw the king within you and Lebron long before you were drafted, so congratulations you are in the NBA now. So go out there, have a long and successful career, win some NBA Titles and make all of us proud.
Now, this would make THEM really angry.
Eric D.Graham is a graduate of Winston-Salem State University, where he received a B.A. in Mass Communication with a concentration in Radio and Television and a minor in History, with an emphasis in African-American Studies. Currently, he is the Editor and Chief of Black Athlete Sports Network, where his articles appear daily along with his controversial cartoon character Bobbee Bee “The Hater.” Graham can be reached at email@example.com